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Mesut Ozil: Arsenal leave midfielder out of Premier League squad

Mesut Ozil has not played for the club since March; German World Cup winner played in every game Mikel Arteta until season was halted due to coronavirus pandemic and has not featured since; centre-back Sokratis also omitted from 25-man squad

Mesut Ozil has not played for Arsenal since March
Image: Mesut Ozil has not played for Arsenal since March

Mesut Ozil has been left out of Arsenal's Premier League squad for the 2020/21 season.

Ozil, the highest paid player in Arsenal's history, played in every Premier League game under Mikel Arteta until the season was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic - and has not featured since.

The German World Cup winner has been available this season until now but Premier League clubs had to name a 25-man squad after the closure of both the international and domestic transfer windows.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos
Image: Sokratis Papastathopoulos has also been left out of the 25 man squad

Centre-back Sokratis has also been omitted from the 25-man squad. Both players will only be able to represent Arsenal U23s until 2021 at the earliest as Ozil's contract at the Emirates Stadium expires next summer.

Arsenal currently have 19 non-homegrown players over the age of 21, two more than the limit allowed by both the Premier League and UEFA.

Arsenal's Premier League squad -

Cedric Soares, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Hector Bellerin (homegrown), Willian, Dani Ceballos, Calum Chambers (homegrown), Gabriel, Mohamed Elneny, Rob Holding (homegrown), Sead Kolasinac, Alexandre Lacazette, Bernd Leno, Matt Macey (homegrown), Ainsley Maitland-Niles (homegrown), Pablo Mari, David Luiz, Shkodran Mustafi, Thomas Partey, Nicolas Pepe, Alex Runar Runarsson, Kieran Tierney, Granit Xhaka

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Where could Ozil move?

Analysis by Sky Sports' Richard Morgan:

If, as expected, out-of-favour midfielder Mesut Ozil is left out of Arsenal's finalised 25-man Premier League squad later today, where could the 32-year-old move?

Well, the German's options are fairly limited, with almost every transfer window in Europe now shut, bar Portugal, where clubs have until October 25 to sign new players.

Mesut Ozil
Image: Ozil's current contract expires at the end of the season

The Russian window closed on October 17, so what about a move to either the Chinese Super League or the UAE?

Well, the CSL's third transfer window shut at end of September, while the window in the UAE closed on October 6, although their FA are still awaiting Fifa approval to reopen that by a month.

However, Ozil could still make a switch to Qatar, whose window does not close until October 25, or the MLS, whose secondary window shuts four days later.

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Mertesacker: Ozil in a sorry situation

Ozil's former Arsenal and Germany team-mate Per Mertesacker sympathises with the midfielder's situation at Arsenal, and suggested perhaps changes in his personal circumstances may have influenced his career.

"A lot has changed away from the field," Mertesacker told the Klick and Rush podcast.

"He got married, has a family... perhaps his focus has changed. Nevertheless, he is still happy and happy to play football.

"He's the only player I've played with for three teams - Bremen, Arsenal and also Germany. So I'm very sorry that he's currently in a situation where he's not really used."

Premier League squads for 2020/21 season

Each Premier League club have submitted a squad list for the 2020/21 season.

Each squad contains no more than 17 players who do not fulfil the "Home Grown Player" (HGP) criteria.

The rest of the squad, up to a total of 25 players, must be "Home Grown".

Clubs are also allowed an additional list of registered U21 players.

What is a Home-Grown Player?

A "Home-Grown Player" means a player who, irrespective of nationality or age, has been registered with any club affiliated to The Football Association or the Football Association of Wales for a period, continuous or not, of three entire seasons, or 36 months, before his 21st birthday (or the end of the season during which he turns 21).

Rules on U21 players

U21 players are eligible over and above the limit of 25 players per squad.

For the 2020/21 campaign Under-21 players will have been born on or after 1 January 1999.

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